By Phoenix of Elder Mountain Dreaming – I am a goddess lover, honoring the goddesses for as long as I can remember. Doing ceremony, prayer and facilitating goddess circles since the early 90s. As I get older, having had a debt to Venus (conjunct my Chiron), it was important to pay homage and respect to the goddess this lifetime. I completed that journey and still honor Aphrodite / Venus.
Aphrodite is an ancient Greek goddess of: Love, Beauty, Youth, Pleasure, and Procreation. She is identified with the planet Venus (signs Taurus and Libra), which is named after the Roman goddess Venus, with whom Aphrodite was extensively syncretized. Aphrodite’s major symbols include Myrtles, Roses, Doves, Sparrows, and Swans.
The cult of Aphrodite was large, and derived from that of the Phoenician Goddess Astarte, a cognate of the Eastern Semitic goddess Ishtar, whose cult was based on the Sumerian cult of Inanna. Astarte was connected with fertility, sexuality, and war. Her symbols were the lion, the horse, the sphinx, the dove, and a star within a circle indicating that Venus was her ruling planet. Aphrodite’s main cult centers were Cyprus, Cythera, Corinth, and Athens.
I chose to write another article about Aphrodite, Venus, Ishtar, Inanna, concerning both Aries and Libra Moon cycles, because Venus rules both Taurus and Libra which means she rules: Sex and Money within Relationships or lack of, empowering or disempowering for woman. These four goddesses are basically the same goddess, just different names for different regions.
We are in auspicious times, so we have to think and act auspiciously to understand our own archetype in terms of our growth, what holds us back and how maiden is over at thirty years old and we have to find our way in light of the Motherless one.
The Great Goddess Aphrodite (Roman Venus) is the most powerful Goddess on earth and has been for a very long time in her Maiden stage (especially if you want a boyfriend, partner, marriage, money and comfort in life). She is represented in almost every country on earth, and every Pagan Dionysus cult world-wide including the Slav’s Mokosh and Lada. She is both Maiden and the older “Maiden” in all her youthful beautiful, spirit of life, and her falling in love with love itself. She is a prime energy for youth within creation and good luck.
Hesiod’s Theogony says Aphrodite is born off the coast of Cythera from the foam (aphros) produced by Uranus’s genitals, which his son Cronus (Saturn) has severed and thrown into the sea. In Homer’s Iliad, however, she is the daughter of Zeus and Dione which came later. Plato, in his Symposium 180e, asserts that these two origins actually belong to separate entities: Aphrodite Ourania (a transcendent, “Heavenly” Aphrodite) and Aphrodite Pandemos (Aphrodite common to “all the people”).
Aphrodite had many other epithets, each emphasizing a different aspect of the same goddess, or used by a different local cult. Thus she was also known as Cytherea (Lady of Cythera) and Cypris (Lady of Cyprus), due to the fact that both locations claimed to be the place of her birth.
Aphrodite was also the surrogate mother and lover of the mortal shepherd Adonis, who was killed by a wild boar. Along with Athena and Hera, Aphrodite was one of the three goddesses whose feud resulted in the beginning of the Trojan War and she plays a major role throughout the Iliad. In other words, when men destroyed society, they also blamed it on Aphrodite (Venus). A real love hate relationship.
But as in all things expressed two-thousand years later of anything, the shadows rising of the Patriarch, even Venus, Ishtar, Astarte and Aphrodite too has a dark past. It is because the ancient fathers and grandfathers left out one very important thing when they were building their Kingdoms and a Goddess that would serve them. They created the Maiden Goddess, who would be the one who stands next to the King or in their bed, at the cost of every woman on the planet.
Venus, Ishtar, Astarte, Aphrodite and Inanna have never had a Mother (which means no Grandmother either). This means that the Maiden who honored Aphrodite Venus, Goddess of Beauty, Love, Money and Sex did so with a Deity that was alien, she had no past, no root connection to earth, no family, no ancestral roots, no protection when men within men’s societies, turned against her. The mother and grandmother stages of life within Venus Aphrodites stories became a complicated one. She ultimately became the evil mother, the evil witch, the evil stepmother and the wicked grandmother.
Aphrodite is the patron goddess of prostitutes and its no surprise that one of the biggest porn sites for men is motherless dot com. Which is not only a modern raping slap on the face, but pretty much proof that Venus and Aphrodite, Istar and Innana cults were to the demise of woman herself.
How does this effect our Psyche? My apprentice and I were talking about this after her Maiden Burial Ceremony now that her first Saturn Return is done. I was talking about this article I was writing about the motherless goddess who is the most powerful. At the antique store she picked up a copy of Psyche and her sisters and said to me: “Maybe because Venus / Aphrodite had/has no mother, this is where the Evil Step Mother had entered into society.”
I totally agreed with her Aphrodite had a son named Eros (equivalent to Venus’ son Cupid). The Son of Aphrodite and Ares is Eros of these later myths who is one of the erotes. Eros was associated with athleticism, with statues erected in gymnasia, and “was often regarded as the protector of homo-sexual love between men.” Eros was depicted as often carrying a lyre or bow and arrow. He was also depicted accompanied by dolphins, flutes, roosters, roses, and torches.
Hera addresses Athena: “We must have a word with Aphrodite. Let us go together and ask her to persuade her boy Eros, if that is possible, to loose an arrow at Aeetes’ daughter, Medea of the many spells, and make her fall in love with Jason . . .” (3rd century bce) “He, Eros smites maidens’ breasts with unknown heat, and bids the very gods leave heaven and dwell on earth in borrowed forms.”
The story of Eros & Psyche has a longstanding tradition as a folktale of the ancient Greco-Roman world long before it was committed to literature in Apuleius’ Latin novel, The Golden Ass. The novel itself is written in a picaresque Roman style, yet Psyche retains her Greek name. Eros and Aphrodite are called by their Latin names (Cupid and Venus), and Cupid is depicted as a young adult, rather than a child.
When her son Cupid found a human to love (Psyche), one whose beauty rivaled hers — Aphrodite did all in her power to thwart the marriage. Right here is the birth of the evil step-mother and all the tales that followed. Psyche was worshiped for her beauty in her homeland. This drove Aphrodite mad, so she sent a plague and let it be known the only way the land could get back to normal was to sacrifice Psyche. The king, who was Psyche’s father, tied Psyche up and left her to her death at the hands of some presumed fearsome monster. You may note that this isn’t the first time in Greek mythology that this happened.
The evolution here of Venus and Aphrodite, adored by humanity in their Maiden stage, eventually turned into mothers themselves, and this is where the problems began. Since these Goddesses had no mother, or grandmother, the evolution of the destruction of woman during the times of early culture, began a lineage of a Motherless Goddess who births trouble in her Adult Mother stage of life, especially with younger women.
Dionysus who is the root of of the Mother and Grandmother, took Venus Aphrodite under his parental pedifile ways and raised girls to turn away from the Mother and Grandmother. There you have it, the Dark Goddess as the scapegoat for both king and god. As king and god turned away from the adult woman and grandmother. For twenty five hundred years we have all kinds of issues on earth, by this rotten root itself.
In Eros’s story with Venus’s daughter, Eros instead falls in love with Psyche himself and spirits her away to his home. Their fragile peace is ruined by a visit from Psyche’s jealous sisters, who cause Psyche to betray the trust of her husband. Wounded, Eros leaves his wife, and Psyche wanders the Earth, looking for her lost love. And Eros turns gay for the love of men.
This was a time on earth when Greek and Roman upper class brought pedifilia in and it spread in rampant ways, and rape was inside the family structure rather than outside with strangers, even though history would have you believe otherwise. Fragmented souls from rape, or pedifilia caused gender confusion in the soul, and then when reincarnation happens, one has no memory of a previous life issues connected with this life’s orientation.
Pedifelia either by male or female, also caused multiple personalities for the victims of incest and rape long ago and their offsprings, and this still happens today. When one has had many reincarnations of the same soul rape, soul possession in waking life or Dreams at night (astral rape) the soul is weakened. Also from early societies when men took over and mother and grandmother were taken out spiritual, community and home leadership, not only did pleasure change for selfish reasons, but so did the ability to heal the soul.
Aphrodite imposed a series of difficult tasks on her daughter Psyche, in mythology, which she was able to achieve by means of “supernatural” assistance which opened another aspect of problems for the soul. After successfully completing these tasks, Aphrodite relents and Psyche becomes immortal to live alongside her husband Eros who was gay. Together they had a daughter, more generations of gay men and motherless goddesses, called Voluptas or Hedone (meaning physical pleasure, or physical bliss) ie Hedonism. In Greek mythology, Psyche was the deification of the human soul.
Following the etymology of the word “money”, its curious relationship to the word Monster (a warning from the gods), they seem to have related roots. The dysfunctional family of divinely rooted words, the etymology of Monster gives us a good picture of monstrum which means:
“An Omen, Supernatural being or Object
that is an omen or warning of the will
of the gods and goddesses.”
Monstrum, as it turns out, is derived from monere, “to warn or to advise, particularly in a divine sense,” and the same root as money. Monster entered the English language around the 12th century from Old French term Monstre, and it appears the monstre was used in Middle English as either an evil omen or frightening physical deformity well into modern English when it became monster. One of the earliest examples of monstre being used in the sense that it is used today appeared in 1385 in Chaucer’s “Legend of Good Women” when discussing a Minotaur that inhabits the underworld:
This Mynos hadde a monstre, a wicked best,
That was so crewel that, without rest,
When that man was brought in his presence,
He would have no defence.
Monster came to also mean huge or enormous around 1500 and soon came to describe things that were figuratively absurd, such as a particularly disturbing thought. While the original meaning of monstrum as an omen is no longer present in the modern monster, this sense lingers on in words derived from the OF and ME monstre like a premonition, demonstrate and muster.”
Aphrodite and Venus, the mother and grandmotherless one, was portrayed in ancient mosaics as a Goddess with Butterfly wings (because psyche was the Ancient Greek word for ‘butterfly’) which meant the endless Maiden (eternal youth) symbol was projected onto woman never to grow up to attain your adult power, when she left the maiden stage. Thus she would lose benefits in society outside of marriage in a Patriarchal system. This was and still is to some degree a double edged sword.
The Greek word psyche literally means “Soul, Spirit, Breath, Life and Animating Force (animism from the soul)”. Why would a motherless goddess, who was too young for power, be given the greatest wisdom of the wise elder grandmothers and replace them? Because maidens are powerless and can be influenced by the powers of a community against other women, older women and even peers and this always keeps the circle of woman… broken. This is the Dionysus Cult 101, accomplishment through paganism.
Relationship issues on the emotional side, rather than rational can even be connected with Social Media. Venus rules Libra endeavors in love for all of us, our social behaviors, the graces of communication, one who is more about walking away from complication or conflict, so no messy blame or problems can be expressed and resolved unless necessary.
The philosopher Aristippus (born c. 435 bce, Cyrene, Libya – died 366 bce, Athens), was one of the disciples of Socrates. He was the founder of the first Cyrenaic School of Hedonism, the ethics of pleasure. Aristippus believed that the good life rests upon the belief that among human values pleasure is the highest and pain the lowest and one that should be avoided. He also warned his students to avoid inflicting, as well as suffering, pain.
That pleasure, regardless of sex with children, or maidens when you are an old man, should be sought. Like Socrates, Aristippus took great interest in practical ethics. While he believed that men should dedicate their lives to the pursuit and enjoyment of pleasure, he also believed that they should use good judgment and exercise self-control to temper their powerful human sexual desires. His motto was, “I possess, I am not possessed.”
Venus and Aphrodite (motherless) rules pleasure…
During the middle ages, Christian philosophers largely denounced Epicurean hedonism, which they believed was inconsistent with the Christian emphasis on avoiding sin, doing God’s will, and developing the Christian virtues of faith, hope and charity. Renaissance philosophers such as Erasmus (1466-1536) revived hedonism and argued that its emphasis on pleasure was in fact compatible with God’s wish for humans to be happy.
In his famous work Utopia (1516), British philosopher Thomas More (1478-1535) explains that “the chief part of a person’s happiness consists of pleasure.” Like Erasmus, More defends hedonism on religious grounds and argues that, not only did God design us to be happy, but that uses our desire for happiness to motivate us to behave morally.
More importantly More distinguishes between pleasures of the mind, and pleasures of the body. He also argues that we should pursue pleasures that are more naturally grounded, so that we do not become preoccupied with artificial luxuries. In the 18th century, the moral theme of pleasure and happiness was more systematically explored by Francis Hutcheson (1694-1747) and David Hume (1711-1776), whose theories were precursors to utilitarianism.
But Hedonism and Christianity are men’s pleasures and have nothing to do with women, maidens or grandmothers. The philosophical battle of what men think is good for men and women.
Aphrodite and Venus have now changed, in our long two-thousand year domination of woman, feminism rose, including Dark Venus which started in the mid to late 1800s. And this was the first time when woman’s surrender wasn’t going to happen. It couldn’t be stopped, as the mother energy was rising on earth and Venus Aphrodite was going to have a mother and grandmother whether she or men liked it or not.
Most women and some men, adopted what feminism stands for in its earliest beginnings up to today’s issues. Laws around health, equal opportunity, freedom to be educated, honoring the feminine spirit, nature’s healthcare, alternative healing choices, natural food, children and mothers be safe in an unsafe world. This was for all races, cultures, genders and colors of those who wanted to actually participate. Many did not.
To understand where we are at now, Aphrodite was birthed near Paphos, on the island of Cyprus and according to Greek myth, Uranus and Gaia had a son named Cronus (Saturn) and he castrated Uranus (because of his Idealism), and threw his father’s testicles into the Sea and thus appeared the most famous and widespread Goddess on earth Venus Rising.
According to Pausanias, her worship was introduced to Paphos from Syria; but originally was of Phoenician origin. Before it was proved by archaeology it was understood that the cult of Aphrodite (Venus) had been established before the time of Homer (700 bce), as the groves and altar are mentioned in the Odyssey.
Archaeology has established that Cypriots venerated a fertility goddess before the arrival of the Greeks in a cult that combined Aegean and eastern mainland aspects. Female figurines and charms were found in the immediate vicinity date as far back as the early third millennium. The temenos was well established before the first structures were erected in the Late Bronze Age:
There was an unbroken continuity of the cult from that time up until 391 ce when the Roman Emperor Theodosius outlawed all goddess pagan religions and the sanctuary fell into the ruins in which we find it today. So at first Maiden was a pawn for the building of the Patriarch to replaced Grandmother and powerful Mothers, and then Maiden was kicked out by Religion, 1,100 years later. The pagan women let her go and reinstated Medusa / Hekate to her rightful position as their Queen, but the artists couldn’t let her go, she was their forth, the muse of beauty and youth in art, music and movies.
Sources: Aurora Album Cover, Woman in white, the Immortal Flower by Хорхе Арче, Lana Del Ray, Video Game, Wiki, Etymologynow.blogspot.com, Hedonism.org, Audrey Helen Weber